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Following death of sexually abused pit bull, Orange County proposes regional ‘do not adopt’ list

Following the recent death of dog that was sexually abused after being adopted from an Orange County shelter, county supervisors want to create a coordinated regional system to prevent known animal abusers from adopting pets.
Supervisors Todd Spitzer and Andrew Do directed county staff at the board’s Tuesday meeting to pursue the information-sharing partnerships with other shelters in the region.
“Work with other jurisdictions to develop a ‘do not adopt’ list,” Do told staff. “All jurisdictions across the counties will have this list and be on the lookout to prevent (abuses) from happening.”
Animal advocates have raised concerns in recent weeks about how the county screens potential pet adopters, after Valerie – a 5-year-old pit bull adopted from an Orange County shelter in late July – was found physically and sexually abused on a South Los Angeles street on Aug. 6. She died a day later, spurring a Los Angeles Police investigation.
OC Animal Care screens would-be adopters mostly based on cases from its own 14-city jurisdiction and some other incidents that have been referred to it by law enforcement agencies. That leaves the shelter currently unable to detect people who have abused animals elsewhere in the region, an omission the proposed partnership could end.
Some animal advocates also have criticized way in which Valerie was adopted – a “clear the shelter” event similar to one scheduled nationally on Saturday, Aug. 18, at which adoption fees were waived to get more animals out the door and prevent overcrowding. While such events have become more frequent in recent years in an effort to reduce euthanasia rates at the county shelter and shelters nationwide, some community members urged county officials to halt low-cost adoptions, suggesting they might attract people who use animals for purposes other than as family pets.
On Tuesday, Spitzer said that OC Animal Care officials had found no evidence or research suggesting that free adoption events attract animal abusers.
Source: OC Register

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